Transportation and Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz said Wednesday he sees "no reason morally and historically" not to recognize the Armenian Genocide, adding that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan "is truly an enemy," Ynetnews.com reports.
A new diplomatic crisis erupted between Jerusalem and Ankara after Erdoğan leveled harsh criticism at Israel over the high death toll in clashes on the Gaza border between Palestinians and IDF.
Erdoğan recalled his ambassador to Tel Aviv and expelled Israel's ambassador. In response, Israel asked Turkey's consul-general in Jerusalem to leave.
On Wednesday morning, Israel's Ambassador to Ankara Eitan Na'eh was humiliated at the Istanbul International Airport as he was made to undergo a strict security check in front of media cameras.
In an interview with Ynet on Wednesday, May 16, Katz called to support a bill proposal by opposition MK Itzik Shmuli calling on the Israeli government to officially recognize the Armenian Genocide—the Ottoman government's systematic extermination of 1.5 million Armenians, mostly citizens within the Ottoman Empire, from 1915 to 1917.
Katz also slammed the Turkish president, saying Erdoğan "hates the State of Israel. He's a man of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas's mother-movement. Every time something happens in Gaza, he gets worked up and acts in a very extreme manner."